ANA, JAL consider resuming fuel surcharges for international flights

TOKYO —Japan’s two major airlines are considering collecting fuel surcharges again on international flights in the October to December period in response to the rise in airline fuel prices, airline officials said Wednesday. Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways have scrapped fuel surcharges on international flights from July to September in line with declines in fuel prices in the preceding benchmark period, a move seen as successful in spurring overseas trips during the summer holidays despite the economic slowdown.

Industry analysts say that consumer sentiment may again be chilled once JAL and ANA decide to simultaneously collect fuel surcharges. Asked about the surcharge for the three months from October, ANA President Shinichiro Ito indicated in a news conference that the firm may resume collecting fuel surcharges, saying, ‘‘As for the direction we are to take, it is likely that we will get them (fuel surcharges).’’

JAL, meanwhile, is also expected to resume its fuel surcharge system for tickets issued during the same period. JAL has a system of collecting fuel surcharges in the event that fuel prices in the previous three months average more than $60 per barrel, with the prices of tickets for the October-December period decided in line with the average of fuel prices for the May-July period.

© 2009 Kyodo News.